How can 3D scanning and printing help the automotive industry?

The relationship between 3D printing and the automotive industry seems to be becoming a long-lasting one. Because it allows companies to print a digital model into a real life one, it is much more effective than other previously used methods.

Most of these companies, especially the most successful ones, have learnt over the years that experimenting with 3D technologies can have a lot of benefits and considerable influence over the product development and it is believed that this influence will continue to grow even more. The use of prototyping applications is now very outdated because 3D scanning/printing is a lot more flexible, can save you money and time and offers you a lot more freedom.

So what benefits can 3D scanning and printing offer the automotive industry?

1 – More freedom

This process can not only offer more design freedom, as drawings are easier to build and amend, but also improve the design overall. For example, 3D printing helps with creating components that are more light weight than before. This makes it an easier process for the manufacturers, as they will be able to reduce the weight of a vehicle which makes the performance a lot better.

2 – Better parts

3D printing processes can also allow manufacturers to redesign and amend their components as needed. As mentioned before, this is helpful to make components lightweight and help improve their performance.

3 – Easier to customise

Because this industry relies on mass production, it can be hard to customize components.  3D printing can make this easier for manufacturers as it is relatively cheaper than other methods. This is very important, especially in situations where the volume of component manufacturing is not as high, or for speciality cars. Manufacturers can use 3D printing for simulating and testing a design before it goes for production.

4 – Quicker and time saving

This is where we can more easily see the benefits of this technology. Designing and testing can take a long time and be very time consuming. 3D printing allows for a quicker design and it is faster and a lot more efficient than other methods. Because a model can be designed so quickly it is also easier for it to be remodelled if needed.

5 – Money saver

Because 3D printing can reduce wastage, this can make controlling costs easier. The prices of vehicles are affected by the use of expensive materials in production. By allowing manufacturers the chance to test and easily redesign (if needed) the components, it massively reduces wastage.

Manchester Metrology is a market leader in the inspection of engineered components.  It offers metrology support throughout the UK and worldwide, in the measurement of engineered components for both indoor and outdoor 3D measurements. Manchester Metrology offers laser scanner equipment hire; they stock a wide range of calibrated measurement equipment for hire including Faro arms, laser trackers, laser scanners, Faro Focus X330 and the Einscan Pro.

In addition to equipment hire, Manchester Metrology also has a vast range of probes, mounting options and accessories for your metrology equipment and offers both onsite and offsite training on a variety of the latest software such as CAM2, Measure 10, Polyworks, Geomagic, Aberlink, Declam and PowerInspect. For more information please call us on 0161 637 8744.